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Phil Wallace on Westley reunion

15 December 2019

Stevenage Chairman Phil Wallace has provided some further insight into the decision to appoint Graham Westley for a fourth time...

“Putting Mark in charge after Dino was the natural choice and we have climbed the form table, but the number of draws – 4 in the last 4 games – means we are still adrift after such a bad start and that needs to change.

“Mark inherited a dressing room in early September with issues on and off the pitch. He has done well to get the team 100% behind him, but we have not won enough points to make that permanent and it is no secret that he has other things to deal with as a result of the recent FA charge.

“I don’t think anyone should underestimate how important it is for him to clear his name and by moving him back to concentrate on coaching, he is able to focus more on his defence without the burden of managing a club. That wasn’t a reason for the decision today, but it is a factor for sure.

“Although off the pitch we are better than we have ever been, it has not been a good half season for Stevenage on the pitch. Our games have probably been as painful for our fans to watch as it has for our management and players to endure. That changes from today. I am positive Graham will inject a winning mindset into everyone at the club starting tomorrow when he will meet with the players.

“I have been speaking to Graham – and others - ever since Dino went. We hae also had informal chats with others who put themselves forward to manage us, but I became more and more convinced that Graham had evolved and matured since he was with us four and a half years ago.

“I have always believed he is a top operator or I wouldn’t have employed him three times before. What I didn’t think he did was evolve and fulfil his potential. In his time working with me I have always thought his talent was undeniable, but his last term with us didn’t feel right to me for all sorts of reasons.

“This time, it does. He has evolved, he has matured and his enthusiasm and feelings for Stevenage are burning bright so it wasn’t much of a decision to put our partnership back together again.

“It is important for us both that we now start winning in a way that brings the fans back to watch us.

“Our immediate objective is to climb the league but once that’s done we will be raising our sights much higher.”

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